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Tip – LinkedIn Not Working for You? Change Your Headline

By February 7, 2011December 31st, 2018No Comments
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Recently, I received a comment on my American Marketing Association (AMA) article, “LinkedIn for Job Hunters – Tips to Create a Must-Read Profile.” In the article, I suggested three ways of changing your message, content, and business story as a job seeker/job hunter. The three ways were:

  1. Create a Memorable Professional Headline
  2. Make Your Summary Engaging and Compelling
  3. Improve Your Credibility

A reader, Heidi, commented on the article:

Your headline should be forward-looking. When crafting your headline, write it for the next job you want to have and don’t be restrained by the corporate-speak title that you had previously. For example, use Social Media Manager rather than Manager of Left-Handed Promotions (yes this is a made up example!).

I thought her comments were spot on and I replied,

Two great suggestions Heidi. And people should also remember to make deliberate choices about words they use. For the more adventurous, consider testing different headlines. Think more than just A|B testing, think A|B|C|D testing until it generates the results you want.

The article was written for a marketing audience. If you are unfamiliar with A|B testing. Think about catalogue shopping. There is always a code on the back when you order. This code has embedded in it a lot of useful information to the company. It may point to a certain version of the catalogue. And the version will likely have a different layout and design, colors, products, etc. Whether the differences are subtle or noticeable, the company is attempting to research the effectiveness of different messages and layout.

I strongly urge you to do the same type of approach of A|B testing with your professional headline. Change it into something compelling and memorable. DO NOT use the standard default of your current job title. Ensure it is part of a unified business storytelling/messaging approach. Remember, with LinkedIn, you can see the visitors to your profile. Over the course of just a few days, you can see if the change in your headline has increased the number of profile visitors.

If you want to get serious with your profile, you want to revise your professional headline, summary, and employment history.

Your approach should bring together all of your story elements.

  • For Job Hunters.  Resume, cover letter, LinkedIn profile, recommendations, accomplishments and the stories you tell, and elevator pitch.
  • For Organizations.  Website, proposals, press releases/outreach, elevator pitch, mission/vision statement, sales materials, LinkedIn (i.e., Company Page, Showcase Pages, Leadership Profiles, Thought Leader Profiles, Sales Team Profiles, etc.), social media sites (e.g., Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, SlideShare, YouTube, etc.)

ADDITIONAL READING

Over 75 LinkedIn tips for Everyone and for Job Seekers
“Wow! Tell Me More” – An Article for United Kingdom Charities
Tell Me About Yourself – How to Wow Your Interviewers
The Personal Storyteller – 3 Tips to Improve Your Communication Skills
Say What You Want, Say it in Under 30 Seconds
The “What Do You Do?” Answer – A Key Tool in Your Sales Toolbox

Ira Koretsky

About Ira Koretsky

Ira Koretsky has built The Chief Storyteller® into one of the most recognized names in communication, especially business storytelling. He has delivered over 500 keynote presentations and workshops in nearly a dozen countries, in more than one hundred cities, across 30 plus industries. His specialties are simplifying the complex and communicating when the stakes are high. He is also an adjunct professor in public speaking and storytelling at the University of Maryland's Business School. With over 25 years of experience, he is a sought-after global speaker, trainer, consultant, and communication coach.